2023 Best Master’s in Forensic Psychology Programs

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Deciding which college to attend can be a daunting task. For many, it will be the most important decision that they make in their lives. To make an informed decision, you have to consider a lot of variables, such as cost of attendance, financial aid, student/teacher ratio, academics, student life, and more. These factors will either positively or negatively impact the quality of education that you receive.

Do you want to acquire a master’s degree in forensic psychology, but don’t know what institution you should attend? Well, if you are as ambitious as I was in my late teens, then you want to attend a top school, instead of an average or mediocre one. Fortunately, we have already done the legwork for you. To help you find the right school for your interests and goals, we’ve compiled a list of 2022’s best master’s in forensic psychology programs.

What institution did we forget? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

  1. University of California – Irvine, Irvine, CA

The University of California, Irvine has an online master’s degree in legal and forensic psychology (MLFP) in collaboration with its Department of Criminology, Law, and Society. The degree program features a multidisciplinary approach that combines fields of study such as psychology, forensics, and law. The program requires 52 quarter credit hours and extends over 12 online classes. Along with mandatory classes, the program includes elective classes such as race and law, clinical interviewing and treatment, violence and psychopathology, and eyewitness testimony.

The MLFP degree is entirely online; however, learners must complete a five-day accelerated class at the Irvine campus at the beginning of the degree program. In place of a thesis, learners finish a capstone class during the winter quarter of their second year of study, which consists of a term paper on a chosen topic connected to legal and forensic psychology. Graduates typically work in various public and private sector positions, including academic settings, government agencies, and research and policy institutes.

  1. Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK

Established on Christmas day in 1890, Oklahoma State University is a land grant college initially developed under the Morrill Act. OSU’s master of science (MS) in forensic sciences has a concentration in forensic psychology; it is designed for people seeking careers in investigative agencies, crime laboratories, and various teaching positions. The forensic psychology online master’s degree program requires 39 credit hours, and learners must sustain a 3.0 or better grade point means. Full–time learners enroll in nine credit hours per semester and can graduate within two to three years. Learners dedicate six credits to a master’s thesis, and they publish, present, and defend their findings.

The school delivers degree program classes in an asynchronous format, and concepts consist of ethics in forensic leadership, forensic victimology, and advanced forensic psychology. The exploration of gender differences in the criminal justice system and research of correlations among types of victims prepare learners to fully engage forensic science in an online classroom setting.

  1. Liberty University Online, Lynchburg, VA

Established in 1971, Liberty University is one of the largest colleges in Virginia and currently grants admission to over 100,000 learners regionally and internationally. Liberty has more than 60 sanctioned degree-granting programs. LU is one of the oldest online colleges in the US and has been delivering classes since 1985. LU delivers its master of science (MS) in criminal justice – forensic psychology degree program entirely online and offers college credit for learners with military backgrounds. Learners can expect to enroll in classes such as fundamentals of forensic psychology, crisis intervention in law enforcement, and criminal justice degree program evaluation.

LU’s master’s in forensic psychology online requires 18 hours of core classes, 12 hours of forensic psychology cognate, and six hours dedicated to a thesis or elective classes. The degree program trains current and potential criminal justice professionals in the application and administration of various psychological methods. Possible career options include criminal justice education, forensic science technician, and intelligence analyst.

  1. Arizona State University – ASU Online, Tempe, AZ

Established in 1885, Arizona State University features one of the largest learner populations in the nation, with over 80,000 learners enrolled. The school embraces a new American institution concept of inclusion and assuming responsibility for the health of the community it serves. ASU has offered online classes since the early 2000s, and the school administers an enrollment of over 27,000 online learners.

ASU’s online master’s degree in forensic psychology gives professionals an understanding of mental health issues and behavior and how they relate to crime and the legal system. The program consists of 33 credit hours, divided into 21 hours for core prerequisites and 12 hours of electives and research. Classes consist of seminars in criminal justice, advanced legal psychology, psychopathology, and quantitative research methodology and statistics. Graduates typically work in occupations in policy analysis, mental health administration, and law enforcement.

  1. University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND

The Dakota Territorial Assembly established this state institution in 1883, six years before North Dakota received statehood. UND’s tuition is reasonably priced—at a rate significantly lower than the current national mean. The school charges for online classes at the North Dakota resident tuition rate regardless of where learners live or how many credits learners take. UND has an online master of arts in forensic psychology degree program with semester-based classes and a one-week, on-campus capstone experience.

UND’s online master’s degree in forensic psychology consists of 35 credits, which learners typically complete in two years. Classes accentuate relations among psychological evaluations and the criminal justice and social services systems. Areas of research consist of jury behavior, eyewitness memory, sexual assault prevention, and child custody evaluations. Learners have opportunities to do supervised fieldwork and independent study under faculty supervision. UND’s learner services consist of online tutoring, tech support, one-on-one interactions with professors, and advising services.

  1. Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Nova Southeastern University is a private nonprofit institution that utilizes a trimester–based academic calendar and has over 150 online degree programs. NSU’s master of science in forensic psychology is a 36–credit online degree program centered on the intersection of psychology and legal issues. The degree program requires learners to finish 24 core credits along with a nine-credit concentration path and a three-credit capstone class. Examples of core classes include ethical concerns and multicultural issues in forensic psychology; psychopathology; individuality disorders; behavioral interventions in forensic settings; and evaluation, methodology, and psychological research.

The degree program delivers classes in a synchronous format and varies its degree plans based on a learner’s enrollment date and pace of study. This online master’s degree program provides the professional training necessary for occupations in criminal justice, law enforcement, social service agencies, and national security agencies.

  1. University of Louisiana at Monroe, Monroe, LA

The University of Louisiana at Monroe is a state institution established in 1931 as the Ouachita Parish Junior College. ULM has over 30 fully online programs, including its master’s in forensic psychology. ULM has a master of science in psychology degree program online, and learners must finish 36 credit hours via the degree program’s general path to graduate. Learners must hold a minimum GPA of 2.75 for admission along with a total score of at least 800 on the GRE general tests. Learners focus on psychometric and forensic concepts in the classroom and enroll in classes focused on topics such as concepts of learning, counseling in criminal justice, basic psychotherapy, and advanced concepts of crime and delinquency. The school does not require learners to finish a thesis to graduate although a thesis is recommended for learners who expect to pursue a doctorate degree.

  1. University of Houston – Victoria, Victoria, Texas

The University of Houston–Victoria is one of the most reasonably priced colleges in Texas. UHV grants admission to over 18,000 learners in its online programs, and UHV’s online master’s degree in forensic psychology is just one example of its many concentrations. UHV designs its online forensic psychology coursework to mirror what learners will face in real-life. The program’s coursework exceeds the academic prerequisites listed for the Texas Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA) credential. Learners obtain a degree after completing 63 credit hours and nine hours of psychology practicum field experience. The degree program trains mental health professionals to work in the public and private sectors of society. Learners take classes, including methods of psychotherapy, individuality assessment, and crisis counseling. All learners finish a forensic psychology holistic exam and must achieve a minimum score of 70 percent to pass. Learners must also sustain a 3.0 GPA to meet academic standards.

  1. Southern New Hampshire University, Manchester, NH

Southern New Hampshire University is a nonprofit institution that administers over 200 online programs and features an enrollment of around 85,000 learners. SNHU’s online master’s concentration in forensic science degree program teaches professionals how to apply psychology research to real-world situations. Instructors offer firsthand experience in the practice and application of leading methods in forensic psychology. Learners receive their graduate degrees in 15 months by taking two classes per 10–week term. Coursework includes the study of concepts of individuality, assessment for forensic psychology, psychology in the courtroom, and intersections of law and psychology. Upon completion of this master’s degree program, graduates are prepared to work in correctional facilities; family, civil, or criminal courts; and federal agencies.

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